Rohit Sharma’s first outing as India captain in a Test match in South Africa did not according to play. The right-hander was out to Kagiso Rabada on both innings of the Test match in Centurion. In the first innings, he could not control the pull – a shot gets him a lot of boundaries in white-ball cricket – and was holed out a fine leg. In the second, Rabada completely opened him up with a delivery that held its line after pitching around off stump. Rohit’s captaincy wasn’t up to the mark either. When Prasidh Krishna and Shardul Thakur were going for runs, he failed to rotate his strike bowlers well, which allowed South Africa to get away with a big first innings total.
To top it all, India have now lost four back-to-back Tests in SENA countries. Former India cricketer Subramaniam Badrinath was very critical of Rohit’s batting and captaincy. The former right-hander said Virat Kohli, who has a better record as a batter in Test cricket should be the captain of the side in red-ball cricket.
“Kohli has a great record as a test leader. He has scored more than 5000 runs with an average of 52 as a captain. He has 40 wins and 17 losses in 68 tests. He led us to a tremendous victory in the Australia series. He has the most wins as Test captain after Graeme Smith, Ricky Ponting and Steve Waugh,” Subramaniam Badrinath said on his YouTube channel.
Virat has led India in 68 Tests, winning 40, losing 17 and drawing 11. His win percentage is over 58 percent as a skipper. He also led India to a series win in Australia as a captain and numerous memorable Test and series wins in England, South Africa, West Indies and Sri Lanka.
As a captain, Virat scored 5,608 runs in Tests at an average of 53.40, with 18 centuries and 18 fifties in 111 innings and the best score of 254*. Under his leadership, India was the number-one Test team for multiple years in a row.
“Why is he (Virat) not the captain of the Test team? I want to raise this valid question. He is a better test batter. There is no comparison between Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma. He is a big player in terms of Test cricket. He has scored runs everywhere. Why is he not leading and a weaker player? As far as I am concerned, a weaker player who is not yet proven as an opener. He has been in and out. We can consider all of that. But I think Rohit Sharma has not proven himself as an opener outside India. Why is he there?” Badrinath added.
Rohit has a fine Test record, having scored 3,682 runs in 53 Tests at an average of 45.45, with 10 centuries and 16 fifties in 90 innings.
But his record in SENA (South Africa, England, New Zealand and South Africa) nations, where India has been weak historically, is not very good. In 21 Tests across these countries, Rohit has scored 1,182 runs at an average of 30.30, with a century and six fifties in 42 innings.